Monday, January 30, 2012

Coconut Cupcakes

When I was a little girl I was not fond of coconut.  The only way I would eat it was in german chocolate cake and only if my Mom made it.  I don't know when it happened, maybe it was just overnight, but as an adult, I love it.  I've become a coconut-holic!  I find myself adding coconut to granola, cookies, and every quick bread you can imagine.  It was only a matter of time before I started making coconut cakes and pies.  Searching through cookbooks one day I came across Ina Garten's recipe for coconut cupcakes and they looked divine!  The flavors were great but I really wanted a light and spongy cake, so I decided to experiment with the cake recipe but I left the frosting as is.  The frosting was perfect, good enough to eat with a spoon! 

The following week I had a request for coconut cupcakes and I still hadn't perfected my cake recipe so at the last minute I grabbed a white cake mix and doctored it up with coconut milk and almond extract and the addition of shredded coconut.  The cupcakes turned out perfect!  They were light and spongy with a hint of coconut and they were perfect with Ina's cream cheese frosting.  So much for my plans of a homemade white cake!  Someday I will continue my quest but for now I have what I consider to be the perfect semi-homemade coconut cupcakes with heavenly cream cheese frosting and a sprinkling of shredded coconut decorating the top!   

Hope you enjoy these cupcakes as much as I do!  I'm sneaking off to the kitchen now to get one before the kids see them!  ;)


1 box white cake mix
1 ¼ cups coconut milk
1/3 cup vegetable oil
3 egg whites
½ teaspoon almond extract
1 cup shredded coconut

Beat ingredients together in a large bowl for 2 minutes on medium speed.  Pour into cupcake pans filling each cup 2/3 full.  Bake at 325 degrees F for 18 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.  Let cupcakes cool on rack.

8 oz cream cheese, room temperature
1 ½ sticks butter, room temperature
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
½ teaspoon almond extract
¾ pound powdered sugar

Beat ingredients together for 3-5 minutes until smooth and fluffy.

Frost or pipe cupcakes as desired and sprinkle with additional shredded coconut to decorate.  Store in refrigerator.

Adapted from Ina Garten's "Barefoot Contessa at Home"

Recipe shared on:
My Turn For Us - Freedom Fridays
Hearth and Soul Blog Hop


  1. These look great! I have a favorite coconut cake recipe but it also uses a boxed mix. Not certain what your homemade cake mix is, but I have made a vanilla cake mix from scratch and have found the key is in using lots of baking powder.

  2. Sheila- Please share your recipe, I would love to try it!! I always prefer cakes from scratch, my dulce de leche cupcakes are from scratch but it is a denser cake than I want for this recipe.

    Thanks for your comment!

    Becky ;)

  3. Wonderful recipe and great blog! Found your recipes on petitchef and following you now))
    Happy Blogging!

  4. Kate- I love petitchef! So glad you found me and like the blog! Thanks so much for following, I look forward to sharing many great recipes with you!

    Becky ;)

  5. pretty cupcakes! I love the wrappers, I've been looking all over for some cute cupcake tins (so far all i've got is white...) Love the coconut frosting! I've always loved coconut even as a kid, these look great!

    1. Kristina-
      Thanks so much! I love the wrappers too! I bought them at a craft store in town called Michael's....they have tons of great wrappers!

      Glad you enjoyed the recipe!


  6. Becky~ a basic yellow cake recipe is as follows:
    2 1/4 c flour
    1 1/2 c granulated sugar
    1 tbsp baking powder
    1 tsp salt
    1 1/2 c milk {could sub coconut milk here; I often use evaporated milk}
    1/2 c oil
    2 eggs
    Combine all dry ingredients and whisk together; add wet ingredients and stir to combine, then mix on medium speed for two minutes. For cake, bake 350F oven for 25-30 minutes. For cupcakes, bake 350F for 15-20 minutes. For white cake {coconut, too} use three egg whites instead of whole eggs.

  7. I looove coconut, so these would be the perfect treat for me! :) Wonderful.

  8. Oooh... I have every single ingredient for this! Gonna make soon, thanks for sharing! :-)

    1. Go for it will be soooo happy you did! Enjoy! ;)

  9. I don't know when I first fell in love with coconut but I know I adore it now. These cupcakes look great. I have never had a Ina Garten recipe I didn't love.

  10. I think I am smitten with this gorgeous recipe - how could i ever resist coconut cupcakes? Yum!

    Choc Chip Uru
    Latest: Nutella Oatmeal + Double Jaffa Nutella Giant Fudge Cookie For One

  11. As always it looks yummy. Love coconut cupcakes.

  12. Ohh coconut cupcakes are my fav! and I love that it's semi-homemade, makes life a little easier :)

    1. Sometimes you just can't improve upon perfection....the box mix is hard to beat and when you add all the yummy extras....EVEN BETTER!!! :)

  13. What pretty cupcakes and they sound so delicious too, Becky. I love coconut but I know what you mean - when I was a kid I hated mayonnaise and avocados and now I love them both! Thank you for sharing with us at the Hearth and Soul hop. Pinned and will tweet :-)